Friday, March 30, 2012

Crazy kids!

We are having fun in Utah! The snow melted this week and so we can play outside...but it is still cold out there! BRRRR.

 We like to play on the computer. Sometimes we do other things!

Build huge castles and knock them down!

 Jill likes to jump. She jumps and jumps and jumps and jumps. We have a hole on the trampoline so she has to be careful to jump on the only one side.
 Jill can ride a two wheeler, with sparkly pink shoes and she always remembers her helmet!

 Hey I ride a bike too! It is fast!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

One In Thine Hand: A Novel Set In Modern Israel by Gerald N. Lund

This was a very Mormon book and a love story. The story takes place in Jerusalem. It was a bit over the top with all the action scenes and the American returned missionary Vietnam Vet always saving the day. It takes place in 1974. There is a lot of unrest in the Holy Land, well there always is. Anyway Brad the American guy falls in love with a Jewish girl and his best friend is an Arab guy that recently converted to the LDS church. They all have a few adventures and try to convert the Jewish girl. I won't tell you what happens but it is a happy ending so you can guess.

I only read it because Gerald N. Lund is one of my sons favorite authors, he wrote the Work and the Glory series so this book was just sitting here so I read it. Not a total waste of time but close because it was just too sappy. 

Healing Book

Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Music Man Play is coming right along...

We having so much fun with the production The Music Man in the Hyde Park Stake. We have practiced so hard and still have so far to go!  We have 14 more practices till the dress rehearsal.

 Look at this amazing orchestra pit and extended stage!!!! There is a runway that goes all the way around the pit! It was built in one day by a bunch of volunteers. I can't wait to see the orchestra sitting in the middle and the whole thing will be painted black.

Here is a picture of all some of Lucy's friends. They have so much fun playing together in between the scenes they are in. This makes it a lot more fun to be in a play when you have someone to hang out with while waiting for hours.
 I don't have very many pictures to share so if you want to see more and try to spot my kids and myself in some of the pictures go to the official blog for the Musical HERE!  There is a few of Lucy and one really funny one of Peter. Susan doesn't have very many shots and either do I. We are wearing really funny clothes and hats in most of the pictures because at practice we are supposed to wear a long skirt our shoes and a hat to get used to them. The first day I wore a hat my neck hurt and everything sounded different. I also couldn't walk as fast or go up the steps as well so it is good we are practicing with part of the costumes now.

My favorite part of this production is the amazing director Keturah Partridge. She is the most talented person I have ever met! I love her insights, direction and she can really sing! She also has a great sense of humor. My second favorite part is the cast! They are all so talented. The quartet, the pick-a-little ladies, the librarian and even Harold Hill. They have amazing voices and are just fun to be around. I am glad I don't have to memorize all the lines and songs they do so I can sit back and enjoy the show.

Peter is one of the band members, the two girls are in the Indian dance and library scene. I am just an ordinary townswomen. I get to sing one solo part in the middle of a Iowa Stubborn, it has 5 words! My few seconds of stardom, don't miss them they are pretty quick! I love to watch the scenes come together after going over them again and again!

Today we ran the Well's Fargo Wagon scene. It still needs some work. We also practiced the gymnasium scene and that one is finally coming together. Our next door neighbor is Thomas is Tommy the boys band leader, he is a great dancer and has been in drama productions since he was very young. He was in the Pickleville Playhouses production this summer, The Amazing Dreamcoat. And I saw him in the production of the Wizard of Oz last year at Skyview Highschool. He has so much talent it awesome.

The show isn't till May 10, 11, 12th and 14th. There isn't very many seats for each show because the extended stage takes up all the space. The tickets are free but you have to reserve them online ahead of time. I will post the link for that when it is available later this week.

Evaluating Books: What Would Thomas Jefferson Think About This? Guidelines for Selecting Books Consistent With the Principles of America's Founders (An Uncle Eric Book) by Richard J. Maybury

Fascinating book! There are so many truths in this book I am going to need to read it again to have them sink into my head. I mean by truths, that the untruth is stuck in my head and I need to replace it with the truth! I am surprised the USA is still functioning under the Constitution after reading about how far we have strayed from so many parts of it today. Mr. Maybury uses "indicators" and "misleading terms" to help the student find out the philosophical slant of most writers of history, law, economics and literature. I love the examples he has and the suggested reading to follow up on the concepts. There is also a lot about the free market and what common wealth means.
There is a great list of books recommended for further reading. I hope to get my hands on a few of these.  Like: Whatever Happened to Penny Candy? and The Clipper Ship Strategy
This is a great book to really start a person thinking about the constitution and evaluate what they are learning in school about History and also to help them to not take everything at face value just because it has been taught in the schools for said by a politician somewhere along the way.

Whole Book

Stormbreaker #1 by Anthony Horowitz

I liked this book because it had so much action. It was like watching a James Bond Action movie only with a little boy and it was all made up in your head instead on the big screen. It was a quick read and you really couldn't put it down because you needed to know what happened next.
Spies, terrorists, crazy rich people trying to take over the world, fancy gadgets and of course a killer octopus! This story has it all and it is only the first in the series! I can't wait to read more.

Not exactly Whole because there was a lot of violence but a pretty good book and you know who is the good guy and who is the bad guy.

Deerskin by Robin Mckinley

Well, I thought because it was such a good author this would be a great book but it turned out to be a little too graphic for me. SPOILER ** not only was their incest and violent rape involved but also lots of blood. This is not exactly a book for any teenager to pick up and read. I didn't like the beginning or the middle but the end was a lot better and there was a happy ending.
Their is a princess and she has a psycho mother who dies, she leaves the king grief stricken to the point of him going mad. The princess was doing fine until one day her father noticed her and decided to marry her. He rapes her before the wedding.
Well not to give it all away, the princess has a dog and as long as they are together they can survive and rely on each other. They take off and end up in a kingdom far away. She doesn't remember very much because of all the trauma and blood and barely escaping with her life so when she ends up at the castle to get a job she changes her name and is just an ordinary peasant. She helps keep a bunch of newborn puppies alive because their mother died and while she does this she makes friends with the prince. They fall in love, she isn't ready for such things and takes off to the wilderness to live as the Moonlady that helps people find things that are lost, like children and lambs...
Well, eventually they are brought back together and she also confronts her evil father. She gets married to the prince and tries to continue her life of healing from her horrible nightmare. The prince is very patient and they raise a lot of dogs together.

Broken and Healing Book

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Happy Pi Day!

The kids brought round snacks to Math class today to celebrate Pi Day! Bean dip and round chips and an apple pie. Yum Fun! 3-14-2012

We are looking forward to 3-14-15 in a few years! That will be super cool!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls

I loved this book. This is the same author that wrote The Glass Castle. This one is a story about her mother and grandmother. Mostly about her amazing grandmother that never let anything get her down. She lived during the depression and put herself through school to be a teacher. She learned to drive a car, fly an airplane and worked hard to own her own ranch instead of working on one. She knows a lot about horses and helped her father when she was younger to train carriage horses. She also raced horses and could take a fall without breaking her neck. She survived a flash flood at the age of 9 and saved her little brother and sister too. This empowered her to do big things and not give up. She was a very inspiring women. She had to endure some hard breaks, like a divorce and her sister dieing. She taught children all over the mid-west and western states, mostly AZ. She dealt with polygamists and Indian families and just kids that wouldn't have learned anything in a school or about the world if she didn't take the time to teach.
Her story made me want to try harder and do more. Her story made me laugh and cry. I love books like this!

Broken, Healing Book

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Presidents and Prophets: The story of America's Presidents and the LDS Church by Michael K. Winder

From Washington to Bush this book was interesting as it told about the Presidents that were nice to the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS)  and those that were not. It also covers each term and who was LDS serving under the president in various capacities, from Senators to interns. I thought it was fascinating and I enjoyed the history lesson. I didn't even know Chester A. Author or James K. Polk were presidents of the USA. Yeah I skipped that in History class or something. Anyway I made a list of the presidents and then rated them from the information of the book to which were neutral or nice to the LDS people and which ones hated us and tried to destroy us. It was interesting to find out that out of 43 us presidents and 16 prophets, 37 us presidents were nice. 6 were not nice. Nine were on the line but I counted them in the nice totals.

The most astonishing thing I learned from this history was that the presidents loved the Tabernacle Choir! This was a great missionary tool and when they listened to the songs and hymns the spirit touched their hearts. Also there were some very key people that were LDS close or even personal friends, to the presidents and advised them. Many of the presidents received the Book of Mormon, some even read it, a few asked for priesthood blessings or for a family member to get one and some attended Family Home Evening with members at some point. The favorite gift from a visiting LDS person representing the first presidency and the "Mormons" was to give the US president a book of his personal genealogy and a family tree.

In the beginning when the saints were being persecuted and drove out of Jackson County and Nauvoo it was a terrible time and the Presidents usually turned the other way and ignored the worst, now the Saints are a highly esteemed people because of their hard working pioneer heritage and helping the west to bloom. They are known for the importance of families and the example of self reliance through the church welfare system, also foreign aid/relief to the world. Prophet Gorden B. Hinckley received the presidential medal of freedom in 2001 from president G. W. Bush. All of the US presidents seemed to be religious and they varied from Quaker to catholic to baptist ... It is amazing. Also many have their temple work done, especially the early presidents an the Constitution signers.

I wonder what Obama thinks of the LDS church. The book only went to the middle of GW Bush's service.

Whole Book

Saturday, March 03, 2012

Winter at last! Well, at least a day of winter.

 Finally some snow to cover up the dead frozen colorless front lawn. We went sledding for the first time today at Lions park. There was a very long sled run there and Edmund and I went so fast he was speechless. Then he decided he wanted to do it again and again and again! 

Here the kids are building a dinosaur.
 This cat is so funny. It is the neighbors cat and he loves to play in the snow. He is still a tom kitten.
The Blue and Gold banquet was this week. Here is a happy cub scout with his little cub bug buddy. We had so much fun making marble runs out of recycled material. It was a successful night with the best committee ever! They come up with the best ideas!
 We have been rehearsing for the Music Man so much that we dream the songs and sing them all week. This scene is the library scene dance. Susan is over on the right (stage left) wearing a blue skirt. This is one of my favorite scenes. They all dance around with books while Harold Hill and Marian the Librarian are falling in love.